Go Behind the Scenes of The Wizard of Oz's 3D Restoration

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Next year marks the 75th Anniversary of The Wizard of Oz. To mark the occasion, Warner Bros. and IMAX have partnered to release a restored version of the film in 3D, which will run in IMAX theaters for one week only beginning September 20. (The restoration will also be released on home video formats.) You can see for yourself what went into the restoration in the featurette below. 

To pull it off, the artists worked with the original film elements, scanning them and removing dirt and scratches. Next came the 3D conversion, which was performed by VFX company Prime Focus World. Warner Bros.' digital colorist Janet Wilson then did the color correction in 3D.

Warner Bros. and IMAX—along with members of the conversion team, including Ned Price, VP of Mastering, Warner Bros. Technical Operations, and stereographer Justin Jones—recently screened three scenes for members of the press, who say that the restoration reveals things about Oz that you probably couldn't see when watching the movie on TV. "You get a wonderful sense of depth with so much layering (especially with the multi-plane castle effect)," writes Bill Desowitz at Indiewire. "The detail is stunning (from the Scarecrow's burlap texture to the Cowardly Lion's fur; from the extra rivet on the Tin Man's face to Dorothy's freckles)." Desowitz also notes that it's not just color that defines Dorothy's journey from Kansas to Oz; Prime Focus kept the 3D in Kansas somewhat shallow, while pumping up the depth for Oz. And they also played around with the 3D, distorting the Witch's nose and exaggerating her hat and fingers to make her scarier, according to Desowitz.

For more on the film's restoration and conversion, head over to Indiewire.

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September 13, 2013 - 1:00pm
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